I have only been hunting ginseng for 5 years now, but the very first patch that I found has 2 very nice plants that were undiggable. One was at the very top of a rocky ridge, and had grown into the root of a red oak that is perched atop the ridge. The other has grown down into a crack in the ledge. It has pancaked itself onto the 3/4\" crack. I did not think to take photos when I planted the seeds last week but both plants are very nice 4 prongs.
Just wondered if there were others that have plants that can not be dug.
It's not a bad thing to have one or two in an area that will always be there for seeding. I used to get upset about it but now I just think it's a good thing for the future! I'm always very thankfull for every one that I do dig.
I remember a large beech tree that had a big flat root that extended out from the base and that root had a hole in it about 1/2\" diameter and a very nice 3 prong growing right out of that hole.
It's one of those images that I can play back in my mind and see it good.
You would have needed a grubbing hoe and a chain saw to get that one out and then you would be very likely to damage it.
It's good to leave some for seed like that.
It's been 3-4 years since I was in that hollow - and I know right where it was at. If I ever make it back there again I will have to check on it. Bet it is a nice 4 by now and has some little ones nearby.
Wow replied to this topic and went out looking for seng afterwards. Only saw one... and who would of guessed? I couldnt get to the root! And im upset because i followed that root neck real far down. it goes under a tree root. It has to be over 40-50 years old. That root had been protecting it for a long time. If it didnt have such a long neck id just leave it alone because it does produce seeds for the area like most have said. But when its possibly more than 50 years old i cant resist. Tommorow im going back with a handsaw. When i got to where it went under the root it was already at more than 30 years by the look of the scars... and i think it goes further. So excited to see how long the neck will be. Ill post a picture of it when I get it out...if i do lol. Who knows how long that trees been protecting it! This might be a real valuable root!